A rogue trader from Farnborough has been fined more than £1,200 after illegally installing an unsafe boiler.
On January 26, Basingstoke Magistrates’ Court heard how unregistered gas engineer Fergus Leask had carried out illegal work to a heating system while pretending to be fully qualified.
Mr Leask assured the homeowner that he was Gas Safe Registered prior to carrying out the boiler installation, and promised to provide a gas safety certificate after the work had been completed, despite not being qualified.
Also trading as Eldan Plumbing, Mr Leask pleaded guilty to breaching gas safety regulations and has been fined £1,230.
Potentially deadly risks
The Gas Safety website warns of the risks of having unsafe gas work. A gas appliance, such as a boiler, can have potentially deadly consequences if not installed by a qualified engineer.
The work of the illegal gas engineer came to light when the homeowner contacted the Gas Safe Register. They expressed concerns that Mr Leask was unable to present a safety certificate several months after installing a boiler at their property.
When inspectors from the Gas Safe Register attended the home they determined the boiler to be in the “at risk” category. This indicates the installation could be a danger to life or property.
Unsafe gas appliances can produce carbon monoxide which is highly poisonous and can lead to fires or explosions.
Mr Leask of 17 Fowler Rd, Farnborough, was fined £1,230 and ordered to pay costs of £350 after pleading guilty to breaching gas safety regulations.
These include regulation 3(3) of the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998, for carrying out gas work without being gas safe registered and Regulation 3(7) for falsely pretending to be Gas Safe registered.
HSE Inspector Andrew Johnson said: “I hope this further illustrates to gas workers how crucially important it is to be Gas Safe registered. Anyone working on gas in the UK is legally required to be registered with Gas Safe Register. There are no excuses.”
‘Top Ten Tradesmen’
Eldan Plumbing is listed on the website Top Ten Tradesman, which categorises itself as a “network of qualified Gas Safe boiler installers”.
Top Ten Tradesman has been approached for comment but has not yet provided a response.
A disclaimer on the company’s website reads: “www.toptentradesmen.co.uk site can in no way be held responsible for any false, inaccurate, imprecise or even illegal (information), available on the website, not having the ability to check the accuracy or legality.”
Source: The Health and Safety Executive
Date Published: February 8, 2017
Author: Jonathan Brown